With today’s 7-6 extra inning loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Milwaukee Brewers (62-81) are one meager loss away from a losing season. As with five of six of the Brewers’ minor league teams, there are bright spots among the substandard won-loss records.
The same holds true for the Brewers, and in particular, rookie pitcher Taylor Jungmann.
The rookie right-hander has made 18 starts this season, including ten of the quality variety. The Texas native sports a 9-6 record with three starts remaining.
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Along with his outstanding body of work on the mound, he has performed well at the plate and has flashed the leather as well.
With his 0-for-2 showing at the plate today, his batting average dropped from .300 to .281, still one of the top marks in the league for pitchers. His 9-for-32 performance includes two runs and two doubles. He has proved to be a good bunter, laying down six sacrifices, second on the team to fellow hurler Matt Garza.
Although the Brewers have struggled against the Chicago Cubs this year, Jungmann has gone a perfect 3-for-3 at the dish against the Baby Bruins.
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In the minor leagues, Jungmann slashed .145/.185/.145 in 72 trips to the plate spread over four seasons. He did have a good year in 2014 at Nashville, going 6-for-22 with three ribbies.
I’m not sure what he is doing different, but a good hitting pitcher can help himself, maybe as much as a win or two during the course of a full season.
Maybe we should give credit to hitting coach Darnell Coles.
When it comes time to measure the defensive part of Jungmann’s game, this season we can honestly say he has been perfect.
Well, he HAD been perfect. In today’s game, he committed his first and only error of the season in the sixth inning, booting a grounder to drop his fielding average to .962.
Just to compare, his minor league career shows 114 total chances, with only five errors, for a fielding percentage of .956 and a range factor/9 of 1.94. Greg Maddux–an 18-time Gold Glover–fashioned career marks of .970 and 3.13. Jungmann has a ways to go, but he is headed in the right direction.
The point is, he has pitched very well in his rookie season, and has helped himself out at the plate and in the field. Will he win a Cy Young, Silver Slugger, or Gold Glove? Maybe, maybe not, but he has proven that he is more than just a pitcher in his rookie campaign with the Milwaukee Brewers.